Auto repair rant

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by edvard, Mar 17, 2019.

  1. edvard

    edvard Tele-Afflicted

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    Now THIS is an idea I can get behind. Maybe when I had the fuel pump/sender unit out, i should have nibbled some extra room for the float and filter to fit through; there was certainly enough room inside from the gasket trench, and seriously all I needed was 1/8 or 1/4 inch and the whole thing would have slid in with no troubles. Too bad the Volvo engineers didn't think of that...
     
  2. Teleguy61

    Teleguy61 Friend of Leo's

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    It's why your average stop at the garage, or worse yet, the dealer, costs about $1000.
     
  3. esseff

    esseff Tele-Holic

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    Heater matrixes seem to be a nightmare: I've never heard anyone say they're easy to change. I found out first-hand on a Renault Clio. Took me a full day to strip out and refit everything. Maybe an hour's job if it could have been accessed through the engine bulkhead rather than having to tear out the entire fascia, centre console, gearbox trim panels, wiper & blower motor, steering wheel and switch cluster.
    $*&?*>%* designers should be made to work on the prototypes before inflicting their creations on the consumer. :mad:
     
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  4. deytookerjaabs

    deytookerjaabs Friend of Leo's

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    I've done a good 'bit of shadetree work and must say...I hate cars, I respect mechanics.


    A month ago...4th Water Pump, under Warranty, on our 2015 Chevy Cruze. I'm thinking we need to move or trade in before the warranty ends.
     
  5. telex76

    telex76 Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I used to do most of my own repairs, but they've made it almost impossible.
    Like the fuel pump on my truck: you have to put it on a lift and drop the fuel tank to replace. If you don't have a lift, you have to remove pick-up bed. Cost about a grand in labor to replace a $20.00 part.
     
  6. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire

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    My guess is too much of the engineering is divided up. The electrical guys do their thing, the engine guys do their thing, the frame guys do their thing. They all meet the specification. The fail is the integration and communication with appropriate compromises along the way.
     
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  7. tap4154

    tap4154 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    My old Ford F150 would need the engine lifted to change the oil pan, or even to put a new gasket in, so I never did (just let it leak). The intake manifold runner activator bushings, which break often (and only cost $2 each), required removing the intake manifold to access them, though I found a way to do "laparoscopic surgery" to replace them with coat hangers and stranded wire while laying on top of the engine, rather than pay the dealer $600.

    OTOH my new Ram with a V6 Pentastar engine has the oil filter on top of the engine (a cartridge inside a plastic housing). Super easy to replace, even in-between oil changes, if you wish. The small oil pan is very easy to remove without removing any other parts. So some manufacturers are getting it right! Thorough I hear the Hemi V8 is still a real bear to change the oil filter, still on the bottom of the engine. Some folks even move it using a remote kit to make it easier.
     
  8. tap4154

    tap4154 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    When I was being towed after my old Ford fuel pump failed (cost $1,200 to replace, dropping the tank) the tow truck driver told me he put an access door in the bed of his Chevy pickup. Why don't the manufacturers do the same?
     
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  9. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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  10. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    There really was no reason for them not to. I had three different GM pickups that I drove in my line of work. All of them had to have the fuel pumps replaced. One day I was up in Delano California at a clients shop, and I watched his shop guys changing a fuel pump on a Chevy pickup, instead of crawling under it, hanging one end of the tank on it's straps, and changing the pump. They just zipped off the bed bolts with an air gun, unplugged the wiring harness, and picked up the bed and set it on some saw horses! Then the guy just stood on his hind legs while changing the pump.
     
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  11. Whatizitman

    Whatizitman Tele-Afflicted

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    My non-engineering solution is to only buy new or used Hondas and Toyotas. That doesn't make repairs easier or less costly. Just less frequent. At least IME.

    But in terms of headaches when repair is needed, all of OP's complaints apply to Hondas and Toyotas, as much as any other cars, old and new.

    I've learned to reduce my love for cars purely out of practicality. They all break and are expensive to fix and maintain. For sanity's sake, I've all but given up any inkling of being an "auto enthusiast". The more I care, the more frustrated I am. Gimme my boring Accord, and be done with it.

    Amps, on the other hand.....
     
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  12. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Doctor of Teleocity

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    Older cars are definitely easier, something like my 66 Volvo is almost fun to work on.
    My newer stuff?
    I pay some poor dumb smuck to do that for me.
     
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  13. bondoman

    bondoman Tele-Meister

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    I've been a mechanic for 30 years . Been cussing engineers even longer. Vehicles or machines in general are not designed with the mechanic in mind. Cost and speed of manufacture are the top priority. Believe me mechanics are not even an after thought.
     
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  14. Bluey

    Bluey Tele-Meister

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    That will teach you to buy euro. Auto repair industry 42 years.
     
  15. rarebreed

    rarebreed Tele-Holic

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    They don't want you working on them, they want you to bring them into the dealership service area so they can collect the $150-$200 per hour labor rate they charge these days.
     
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  16. rarebreed

    rarebreed Tele-Holic

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    I used to do all my own mechanic work and still do on some things if I can,but for the most part it's a nightmare to work on a late model vehicle. What "bondoman" says is true about the way vehicles are designed and built,I worked in a Ford assembly plant for a good many years and it is something to see how cars and trucks are built. At one point back in the 1990's we were building 94-96 Ford Explorers per hour. A new Explorer would pass your work station about every 40 seconds.
     
  17. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Doctor of Teleocity

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    Cars are built to go together fast on a production line. They start with thousands of parts and come up with the fastest way possible to put them all together. Absolutely no thought is put into where the piece you may have to replace end up.
    Changing the water pump on the 88 F350 7.3 diesel I used to have I came to the conclusion that the first part down the assembly line was the DARNED WATER PUMP !
    Had the same thought when I changed the heater core in my "just out of warranty", (by days) 87 Mercury Sable.
    The only reason old cars are easier to work on, ones from say the 1960's is simply the number of part is so much lower.
    I can't even imagine the difference in numbers of individual parts between my 66 Volvo wagon and my 01 BMW 5 series wagon.
     
  18. scelestus

    scelestus Tele-Meister

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    I have a little conspiracy theory that says the manufacturers hear from their repair places and have kept them in business. Parts that used to crap out were cheaper to fix. Now that they crap out less often, they're more expensive to fix and over time the repair side keeps the same margins.

    I don't really believe it, but it sure fits a narrative.
     
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  19. viking

    viking Friend of Leo's

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    intank pump on a 240 is easy, seriously
    Most auto repair is kind of straight forward, if you have the knowledge and tools
    Almost everything can be checked out before diving in these days
    Plus specs for any car is available
    And the whole : can't work on newer cars..... Is complete bull...... It's much easier in many cases than in the old days
    Cars can tell you what is wrong, and it won't cost much to get the equipment to understand fault codes and so.....
     
  20. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Doctor of Teleocity

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    Fault codes are often like blackface tube charts on silverface amps, misleading.
    I once replaced all parts the GM dealer said our 99 Chevy pickup needed. Catalytic converters, O2 sensors and maybe some other stuff, $600 or so, they wanted $1,200 to do it. I had the read out from their machine and machines don't make mistakes. . . . . .
    Of course all that didn't change a thing and in the end the problem was caused by the former owner's stupidity. He put a K&N air filter in it and the oil got on the mass airflow sensor.
    Maybe the dealer knew that and just wanted to make money I don't know. I've never had much faith in dealerships because mechanics get paid a percentage on the parts they sell.
     
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